Lent 45: It is finished

30 03 2013
Good Friday: It is finished.

Good Friday: It is finished.



Good Friday.

Lent 44: Christ following

29 03 2013

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:34-35, TNIV)

On that evening before Jesus died, he gave his disicples the above command. To Love. Before that he had washed their feet. Talk about love. Those feet had to be smelly. But that would be nothing compare with the love they’d witness the next day.

So I’m brainstorming some ways that we show love to one another… Lent 44: Christ following some of these examples are things we do within our families or circles of friends… some are within the body of Christ, many overlap. They’re the ones that are coming to mind first.

Love one another: foot washing, care taking, truth telling, hand holding, diaper changing, bus stop waiting, stomach feeding, gas grilling, fridge cleaning, shoulder for crying, errand running, coffee making, meal making, meal serving, dish washing, toilet scrubbing, bread providing, trash picking, attitude changing, wrong admitting, outreach participating, big kid sitting, worship coordinating, after worship or other event cleaning, before events prepping, sign fixing, leak patching, bulletin copying, creative gifts using, sound monitoring, instrument playing, hand shaking, breath holding instead of temper flaring, letter mailing, encouragement giving.

Christ following, Body of Christ being, circle of friends being, family living… love.

Day 45: it is finished (Good Friday)

24 04 2011

it is finished

It is finished. The day is finished, and there are many ways to recognize that the day is over–we’re in our pj’s, Kajsa is asleep, my teeth are brushed, the lights in the rest of the house are turned out, I’ve closed my laptop… and, Abby’s collar. For many years now, Jim has removed Abby’s collar every night, to give her neck a break. Don’t worry–we don’t keep the collar on super tight, but it has to be frustrating to wear a collar all the time. So every night, Abby’s collar is removed, and placed by the door, ready for tomorrow. The day is finished.

Jesus said those words, “It is finished”, in John 19:30, part of the two chapters (John 18 & 19.) read at the Good Friday service. Then he died. “It is finished” referred to more than the day. In fact, the day wasn’t finished. But for those who loved Jesus, the hope was finished, the ministry was finished, their friend and Lord was finished… and, they probably feared, they were finished.

In fact, it was fulfilled–the scriptural prophecies, the mission Jesus had from God to bring love and forgiveness. Fulfilled, but not gone. Finished, as in fulfilled and accomplished. But not gone. Far from gone…

Day 44: hands and feet (Thursday)

24 04 2011

hands and feet

Maundy Thursday. The day in the Christian church calendar when we remember Jesus’ last supper with his disciples–and the commandment he gave his disciples–to love one another. Loving as Jesus loved.

Kajsa and I made these handprints and footprints the other day from chalk and water. Thursday, walking home from the Maundy Thursday service, I was touched by the amount of hands and feet, “printed” over part of the driveway. It’s fun and cute, and Kajsa loved seeing the prints–until the rain washed them away. But aside from that, it was a good reminder to me of how I, and all followers of Jesus Christ, are called to be hands and feet. We are commanded to love–and mostly the kind of love Jesus referred to isn’t simple, or easy, or fun. It’s definitely harder than chalk-prints in the driveway.

Loving as Jesus commands often includes our hands and feet–literally and figuratively. It doesn’t guarantee positive results. Sometimes it goes all wrong. But the commandment is still there.

How is God calling you to be his hands and feet these days?

Day 43: the crosses I wear

20 04 2011

John 12:27-36.


I love the crosses I wear. Many were gifts from people I care about, several were crosses I bought while visiting somewhere special, others were simply something I liked in a store with no special significance—just a cross I like. There are some days when I have a hard time deciding what cross to wear, because I like them all so much.

Now that I’m in Holy Week, and the remembrance of THE cross is getting closer, I’m realizing something embarrassing: when I put on various crosses, I rarely think about the cross Jesus died on. Rather, I think about where the cross is from, who gave it to me, and what situation or event it reminds me of in my own life.

I’ll set aside my guilt for a moment–the guilt over not focusing on THE cross when I wear my crosses. And I’ll do a bit more reflecting over the rest of this week. The cross that Jesus carried and died upon, was from the Holy Land. It was given to him by religious leaders, soldiers, ordinary people. But I wouldn’t go so far as to say that it was a gift to Jesus.

The cross was, and is, a gift from Jesus. To us. Though he probably had moments of concern (12:27), this time—the cross—was the reason he came. To glorify God by saving the world.

Day 41: out of control

18 04 2011

out of control

Out of control. No, I’m not talking about the dandelions. I’m not even going to try to get rid of dandelions. I’m talking about the child’s clothing choices for the day. It was a battle I was prepared to fight over early on in the morning… then I realized, I didn’t need to fight it. As long as she didn’t go out in public like this. Ok, some of you might be thinking, what’s the harm? so the kid insisted on wearing her tie-dyed leggings and other-color-toned-striped shirt…. big deal. Then add the cow gloves. Big deal, right? You’re probably right. (Maybe you can’t see the outfit well enough.. try going here for a better view.) And there are plenty of times when she goes out in outfits I cringe at, because they don’t quite match as much as I’d like… but, oh well. I managed to survive morning.

That aside… what does this have to do with Holy Week? This: the Pharisees said that it was all out of control. Their tactics were getting them nowhere. The crowds, the world, “everybody” was following Jesus. (This week I’m photographing/blogging about a different passage each day. Today’s is: John 12:9-19.) Try as they may, they, the Pharisees, just couldn’t seem to get things under control. This Jesus fellow was too charismatic… he raised that Lazarus guy from the dead, and now, everyone was giving Jesus a parade. What could they do?

As we know, they tried. They tried to get it under control. And they thought they had succeeded. The joke was on them, however. And by “them”, I don’t just mean the Pharisess. I mean anybody and everybody who thought that Jesus was mere mortal, only a celebrity of the weirdest, though most compassionate, kind…

Out of control? Definitely.

The Pharisees had less control over Jesus than I have over Kajsa’s outfit matching tomorrow morning… or of dandelions not coming up in our yard next week.

(p.s. for those who think I should let Kajsa wear whatever she wants, however poorly it matches: don’t worry… some days I will. And for those who think I should do a better job of setting out matching choices before she gets to her clothing drawers: don’t sorry… some days I will.)

way late posting: “Holy” Saturday

8 04 2010

“Holy” Saturday

Originally uploaded by cathyse97.

Is this what that Saturday before the resurrection was like–looks of confusion, people scattered all over, even the animals scattered, wondering what was going on…? And, as much as I love an Easter egg hung–and I do–missing the point of the whole thing? (Don’t get me wrong–I’m one who likes to do the egg hunts, as long as we don’t lose sight of the reason we celebrate Easter.)

I can only imagine the shock, grief, confusion, disappointment, and discombobulation felt on that Saturday… wondering what needed to happen next. How to go on? How to move forward? Where to look for meaning, for comfort…